From Pain to Blessing
Life is hard. You can be doing all the right things and still face challenges. This was the story for Joseph in the Bible. God had given him two dreams about doing something great in life (Genesis 37) but instead of experiencing greatness he had a lot of pain.
For starters, when Joseph told his father about his dreams his father rebuked him. He didn’t show any support to his son. Do you know what it is like to share something God told you to someone you care about only to have them say, “Well, I don’t’ know” or “do you really believe that is going to happen in your life?”
Then Joseph’s brothers betrayed him and sold him to the Midianites. Joseph’s brothers did not like him because Joseph was his father’s favorite. Do you know what it is like to be betrayed by someone you love? To be totally rejected and abandoned?
You would think Joseph’s life would get better from here since he was now a slave but the story gets worst.
Joseph’s boss Potiphar, had a wife who wanted to get sexually involve with him. She kept pestering him and one day she assaulted him and he ran away. Potiphar’s wife accused Joseph of rape when she was the one who tried to rape him. Due to this serious accusation, Joseph was put in prison. From son, to slavery, to now becoming a prisoner – will there be any good break for Joseph?
Unfortunately, no. The story gets worst. While in prison Joseph helped a cupbearer interpret his dream. Joseph told the cupbearer to remember him when he gets out of prison. The Bible says the cupbearer forgot him (Genesis 40:23). Do you know what is like to be forgotten by the person you prayed for, helped, or invested in?
Joseph’s life can remind us of our life. We’ve been faithful to God. We’ve prayed, we’ve fasted, we’ve served, we’ve helped, we’ve chosen to believe and yet we have faced trouble after trouble. Sickness, job loss, financial struggle, relationships problems, being overlooked, forgotten, betrayed, accused. Whatever it is life has not been a straight line.
However, in life pain does not last forever. It has an expiry date.
Thankfully, Joseph’s story ends in a different way.
One day Pharaoh the most important person in Egypt needed help to interpret two dreams. No one could interpret his dreams. Finally, the cupbearer remembered Joseph and told him that he could help him with the understanding of his dreams.
The Bible says Joseph was able to interpret the meaning of the dreams (Genesis 41). Due to the wisdom God imparted on Joseph he was automatically promoted. He was given favor and many blessings.
God blessed Joseph with power. He become second in command. He was in charge, the only person above him was Pharaoh.
God blessed him with possessions. He was given a ring, a new robe, and chariots.
God blessed him relationally. He was given a wife and he married and had two sons.
God blessed him emotionally and mentally. Joseph named his first son, Manasseh which means to forget and his son Ephraim which means God has made me fruitful in the land of suffering. God did a reversal in Joseph’s life. All the pain he went through was now filled with joy.
God blessed him internationally. Everyone needed to come to Egypt to get food because the famine was so great.
All the pain Joseph went through served a bigger purpose in his life. To bless others and in return he was blessed too. His life started off with pain and heartache but in the end his life was filled with many blessings, his cup was running over.
The same God who shifted Joseph from pain to blessing can turn your situation around. He can turn all your weeping into joy, give you beauty for ashes, give you hope when your soul was in despair.
Romans 8: 28 is right when it says, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who[a] have been called according to his purpose.”
Right now things might now look. In fact you might be feeling hopeless but just like Joseph whatever you are going through continue to trust God, be faithful to Him, and let him turn your tears of pain into tears of joy.
In the end, God can turn it around and you will be able to testify that God is good and has been good to you.
To watch the full sermon on this topic please click here.